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Discount drug savings reach $3.5M

Albany County residents filed more than 93,000 prescriptions through program

— Hundreds of county residents have paid less for prescription medication by simply presenting a card over the past few years. They’ve racked up $3.5 million in savings.

The Albany County Legislature joined the ProAct administered discount prescription drug program in February of 2010. The program provides savings for uninsured or underinsured residents at most pharmacies. Program participants have collectively saved more than $3.5 million, with more than 93,000 prescriptions filled at local pharmacies. County officials said program participants on average saved 45 percent on each medication.

Legislature Majority Leader Frank Commisso applauded the program as a “great success” and “major benefit.” Commisso said the county would continue seeking partnerships to benefit residents.

Albany County Executive Dan McCoy said prescription medication could be “quite expensive,” so helping ease the financial stress on residents is important.

“At a time when the cost of prescriptions has increased significantly,” McCoy said, “I am pleased the county has found a way for people to purchase the medication they need at an affordable price.”

There are 50 counties statewide participating in the ProAct program, which was offered to municipalities and residents for free. Every county resident is eligible to use the program and there are no enrollment forms. A family can also use one card.

“Residents who are uninsured or underinsured are forced to pay the full cash price for their prescription medications, which can be extremely costly,” Albany County Legislature Chairman Shawn Morse said in a statement. “These are the residents we are targeting with the discount card. We want to provide them with an opportunity to purchase their necessary medications at an affordable price.”

Several county offices provide the discount cards to residents, such as the Department of Social Services, Health Department and County Clerk’s Office. Residents can also receive a new discount card if their original is lost. Local pharmacies have also been supplied with discount cards to offer residents.

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